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tv   Key Capitol Hill Hearings  CSPAN  May 27, 2015 7:30pm-8:01pm EDT

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example nurse plant matter that the utilities must do. >> maybe we can bring in rick to talk about some of the policies were suggestions that could help bring the sin. >> sure and i will say this is an area where the dynamism of the u.s. private sector is clear in my money is on the private sector for delivering solutions that are going to make this an important part of how we deliver our low cost low-carbon of the structure going forward. richard is actually -- he absolutely right.
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the president has been focused on this within a wide range of solutions that we need for the long-term transformation of low-carbon energy. this is one of the important tools in the kit so we have invested in that through the recovery program and important investment in smart technology and also things like -- and a whole range of cutting-edge technologies that will help us to deliver the kinds of savings we are talking about here while continuing to budget for innovation in the this space through the department of energy's office of electricity and then there are important policy interfaces beyond that. first given sustained attention and we are broadly supportive of that work and then under the clean power plan we expect that states will look to this as their toolkit to deliver reductions in the clean energy that they want. >> thank you.
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>> my name is david buchbinder and it's a very simple yes or no question for mr. duke. is there a publicly available document that describes the laundry list of measures in the iadc will achieve 26 to 20% emissions reductions and if not why not? >> so i think we will acknowledge that there are no simple answers in this line of work. let me give a more complicated answer but i think an important one which is -- let me give a more comprehensive context on this. so when we look at the overall climate negotiations one of the things the administration has prioritized and continues to prioritize and has achieved significant progress on is ensuring that transparency and accountability are core to the overall climate initiative process and that is delivered
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some really important elements. we expect to see featured in the paris discussions as well. for example every two years not every major economy is putting forward by -- by and were reports. we did our first ever biannual report last year and we have another one due now on the two-year mark and every major economy is now also providing that same transparency, that same accountability and we think that's a critical feature of international discussion on climate. we intend to continue to fully comply with what we have negotiated there in terms of transparency and accountability on how we are doing on our climate targets and so i would point a to in the first instance are biannual report which provides important information with respect to our 2020 target and i would invite you to stay tuned as we move forward for second by in a report scheduled with every other major economy and i think this report from w.
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r. i is consistent with our internal assessment and we are on track for a 2020 and 2025 targets. >> hi. mallory with johns hopkins and this is a question with carl. what are your underlying assumptions in your modeling about the rate of deployment and the extent of the use of cci and the rate of retirement? i know the au presents a variety of -- that could impact u.s. carbon emissions. >> we assume reference case under ccs and nuclear use and retirement.
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>> i've got two questions if i may. one, how do we monitor these emissions reductions and does this option plan encompasses alaska and u.s. territories? >> is your question for rick? >> rick but i actually wanted to bring john and nancy if he had any idea for monitoring if you can come back to alaska. >> i think tracking u.s. emissions is fairly straightforward. i like to rely on wri to do that. [laughter] but there are many institutions that track emissions and look forward to what the policies are
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are. i tend to stay away from the eia and others which tend to not be very good at forecasting what's going to happen. if you're looking for a forecast of renewables i recommend my former employer greenpeace but i think whether the u.s. is on track will be well-known in the u.s. for quite some time. i don't think there is any shortage of institutions that are going to be willing and able to focus attention on any short-term incidents that might or might not exist frankly including my institution which tracks the shutdown very carefully and be constantly point out to the administration that they rely heavily on incorporating decisions in their forecasting. so i think that's pretty much said and i guess i would give the second question to others. >> big picture though the monitoring is going to be a really big deal in the climate talks come isn't it?
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>> i think that's true and i would say where that's going to be a problem is not in the united states but in other countries. there are a number of players as i said before that will track u.s. compliance with targets you know ranging the whole spectrum from the -- a whale from the right and coral way over on the bright at the bigger challenges the transparency and accountability of other countries and that is why the u.s. to the negotiations has been very focused on a clear set of standards that applies to all players so that all countries are moving forward not just with their target is but what they are doing to accomplish it in the context of the biennial agreement. >> rick did you want to weigh in and go on to the last question? >> sure. i will just reinforce what john has said and again we view of
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transparency and accountability as central to the climate discussion nationally. we pushed very hard to maximize transparency and accountability in the various agreements and we will do the same as we come forward to the paris discussions. and so we will also fully participate in anything that is agreed to whether it's the biennial reports including the multilateral assessment products. last week i sat in lima in the hot seat and discuss how we are doing in our targets and took questions and every country is now doing that and that's critical to make sure we have brought transparency and accountability across the world. so we feel very good about that process of accountability that it brings. i would note with respect to our numbers we have lots of systems to track her numbers as john has indicated and that, on different timescales in different scopes. one important data point that's worth noting is that the last
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four months the energy information administration literally comes out with monthly data on their energy co2 emissions in the last four months the first four months of this year we have seen energy co2 emissions down 3% from last year so we track on monthly scales on annual scales. everyone tracks and there's lots of accountability from the u.s. and we need to make sure that some true on a global scale as well with climate discussions. with respect to the alaska question, i'm not sure i fully understood the question but we do work to take a nationwide approach to our overall action plan and to our efforts to draw down emissions. >> i think you want to jump in. >> i am 100% sure alaska is in and i'm fairly sure the territories are in. i'm going to ask my project team members to give me a thumbs-up
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on territories or a thumbs down if i'm wrong. a couple of thumbs-up, thank you. >> i guess we can move on to another question. >> hi george frampton partnership for responsible growth rate in trying to correlate your emissions reductions pathways with existing policies i wonder if you could clarify what your assumptions were for the power plant sector? it looks like your box, table 1 on page 13 even the middle-of-the-road as well as the go-getter scenarios assume a much greater reduction of the powerplant rule would promise is fully implemented. am i misreading this? this is an 18% reduction by 2021 from 2012 but the power plant
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sector would only envision a 16% reduction by 2030. >> as we lay out in the full report, the reductions in the power sector and are three pathways include the effects of the clean power plan and then federal appliance standards and other federal programs we have treated as additive to what's going on at the state level in the clean power plan and we lay that out in detail in the report. >> i thought there was somebody a woman in the second row. >> hi i'm rachel. i was actually wondering if wri plans to update it's -- when the clean power plan is utilize the summer. >> i can't say for sure whether we will do that. certainly as sam laid out in his remarks we have been doing ongoing analysis with the u.s.
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mitigation potential over the years. i hope we have a chance to update this as we move forward. >> i just wanted to follow up on the answer about transparency and accountability. when the west china agreement was announced i remember mr. podesta and ms. mccartney said it was based on a careful analysis of all the things that could be done under existing law and that is how they 26 to 28% reduction commitment was calculated so my question i guess as a follow-up if there was that kind of analysis that got to 26% or the 28% when will that be made available to the public? >> thank you for your question and i'm glad you raised it. and let me give quick context on that uncommon on the other line
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basis for the 202005 target. last november president obama and president g. jointly announced a historic set of targets to cut emissions and this is something that has had a galvanizing effect on the overall momentum in the paris negotiations. since then we have seen cuts that represent over 60% of global co2 emissions come forward with post-2020 emissions reductions targets the loss of momentum and lots of cars coming down accordingly. india has since put forward a target of 175 gigawatts of renewables by 2022 which would mean well over 20% of their electricity would come from renewable electricity by that year so we see considerable momentum coming out of that joint announcement and to get to
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the question of the development of the 26th to 20% target by 2025 we went through intensive dialogue with the different agencies and the administration about what's possible under existing authorities come existing statutes in order to drive down emissions. the president has asked every agency to consider what they can do and we keep looking for options to drive down emissions similar to what secretary vilsack has come forward to announce in the agriculture sector. and so in the run-up to the joint announcement we conferred with the different agencies and looked closely at all the options across every sector under existing authorities to drive down emissions. as i have indicated we are participating fully in the climate negotiations process and we are pushing at every turn for common standards of transparency and accountability that all major economies are doing in
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lockstep and we will continue to push for those mechanism in the context of local negotiations. we will continue to fully deliver on that transparency and accountability in lockstep with other countries as they move forward. >> in fact, -- in the back. >> just a follow-up on that. >> would you mind introducing yourself? >> him with the congressional research service and appreciating the u.s. long-standing push for transparency and accountability into the framework convention would it make sense for the united states to demonstrate the kind of transparency in detailing its commitment that we would like to see from other key countries like china and india? >> thank you for the question. the important perspective that we bring to this topic that we
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need global action on what is a global challenge and to make that happen in a sustained way over the years and decades where we see transformation towards a global low-carbon economy requires that all major economies participate fully and provide clear targets ambitious targets and guidance on how to go against those goals. as other panelists have indicated our numbers are quite clear and it's really other countries will receive more opportunity to clarify and document what is happening and what the plans are. we need to make sure that we negotiate accordingly and we continue to push for maximum transparency and we will continue to fully apply -- comply with what we negotiate in a context so again my point to the multilateral assessment that i participated in and lima and the climate negotiations this past december . to the biannual report our first-ever biannual report and forthcoming biennial reports and all major economies
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are doing the same thing. >> can i jump in and ask you to spell out perhaps fill out in layman's language whites are difficult to figure out who's doing what in the climate negotiations. why transparency and verification? >> i'm happy to jump in here. i would say the thing that we are stepping around is in a lot of countries we have developing information just about the basic staff emissions and what is industry contributing what are consumers and others contributing so the basic thing that is negotiated is the entry level of accountability around what are the actual emissions and how were we going to achieve the targets that we sat? that is not a question in the united states. >> right but further countries and globally is their uniform way of expressing these actions
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being taking? >> what hasn't been expected of countries is that they will spell out exactly how they will meet the emission reductions targets. it's just a long ways off. these are actions that will be taken by future administrations. they are huge factors that play including big switches away from coal and other resources that are global. there are ongoing questions about what the future of congress and others will play and all of those factors mean we will have to adopt this moving forward. we know that it will be difficult to meet this target in the u.s. and we know will be difficult to meet the targets in the e.u.. i don't think that anyone expects this administration will say here is the playbook. here's exactly how we will meet the target. that is why wri to this report to show there a multitude of options and in the future i think you will see the
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administration bring out additional policies that they will follow to achieve targets and we will see future demonstrations do that and we will potentially see an acceleration of emission reductions in response. but nowhere in the process or frankly in our political process do we expect parties to lay out but they are going to do 10 years forward. >> so that's the clear point that there is no uniform way of expressing the targets and there's no -- coming from the top-down? we will go to people who haven't asked questions yet. >> mr. duke i would like to ask i think it's an important time. could you answer directly and simply the question when he are going to release the assumptions that are behind your 26 to 28%
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reduction so that we can evaluate and audit their reasonableness? i don't want you to answer any other question but that one. >> so i think when they look at the overall climate action plan we have laid out in the climate action plan itself and in our formal submission of our nationally determined contribution as it's called in the u.n. context the different statutory authorities in the different measures -- [inaudible] as i was just saying we have laid out quite a bit of detail in the climate action plan itself and in our intended national contributions. the different statutory authorities in the different measures that we will be pursuing in order to deliver our 20 and 2025 prediction -- reductions goals and that
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includes things like this clean power plan and setting heavy duty power sanders that includes three gigatons worth of emissions reductions from appliance efficiency and equipment efficiency and additional reductions from building codes determinations and includes important process on methane reductions and all of these things are part of what we foot forward -- put forward publicly in which we will then continue to report on as we proceed. so this summer we will see the epa finalized the clean power plan and important information will be part of that final rule and can be factored into everyone's assessment of how we are doing against our overall goals. the same thing applies to every appliance efficiency standards at the department of energy will bring forward with consumer savings and carbon reductions for the same thing with epa policy program czars program to
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reduce hfc is which by the way we are working very importantly on both the domestic and the international front to address hfc emissions and that's an important part of the 10 elements and they wri report and i want to comment on that briefly what we have a chance. >> i am being told that there is time for one more question which we can take from the floor. and then i actually wanted to get in a quick question on my own. >> allen greenberg u.s. department of transportation. rick on an earlier point you made about capping all authority and so forth to look at other sectors i believe it's a center for public integrity at nyu is but it was something that suggested that there would be broad authority under two parts of the clean air act and
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section 115 involving the regulation of international recognized pollutants and 211 for fuel. and the theory is that you can do an economy wide regulatory approach based on the authority from these two sections and i'm wondering whether that's been looked at either by you or coral or john and if you have any comments on it? thank you. >> i'm happy to answer the question. certainly on section 115 there is an ongoing discussion both on the hill and in the environmental community for some time. but that is authority exists. it certainly offers the potential for broad approach. i think that right now it's pretty clear where the administration is having under section 111. i think the amount of energy in the time time that has gone into set the standards and the process that launches going forward shows that they are not
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intending to move forward under section 115 but nevertheless that authority does remain and it is a potential backstop in the future and a potential way to get roger emission reductions. if we continue to need to use administration authority in a post-25 period. >> thanks. if no one wanted to weigh in i would close out by just that i could ask anyone if anybody here here, what they saw the prospects for getting action from congress or involvement from congress between now and november 2016, if anybody thought that was remotely a reality for a process that could happen? correlates on your to-do list. >> i would doubt that between now and november 2016.
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>> the house and senate are looking at some energy bills this year. both of them have titles to promote energy efficiency. it's yet to be seen whether they can make an aggressive -- [inaudible] >> , on a can be the optimist. >> well i can try. congress is absolutely going to take some action on energy in the coming i guess basically year at this point. whether it will impact the world i think is the row question. we saw the senate passed a bill with two senators on the floor after years of trying on energy efficiency so we know there is some creativity applied but i think in the end something meaningful, something that actually made a difference i do think that's in the cards. >> for a second there i thought you were going to end on a down note.
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>> >> as san noted in his remarks across the state's we have porfolio standards energy efficiency resource standards and those are spread across a blue purple or read states there is a lot of action going on at the state level to increase renewable energy to capture the economic benefits and job benefits that cuts across parties and we expect that to continue. >> please join me to think our panel for a lively discussion. [applause]
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>> thank you for being here today. we will see you again soon. [inaudible conversations]
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